First things first unless the top guys fall wait on picking your QB. In casual leagues quarterback go way too early so go pick up all the great value WRs and RBs that get left behind instead.
Cam Newton – ADP 7.11
There are not many more well-known players in the NFL than Cam Newton. Back in 2015 he was named regular season MVP and nearly took the Carolina Panthers all the way to Super Bowl glory. Before the 2016 season, the fantasy community were drafting him high, going in the 2nd/3rd round he was the first quarterback off the board. Everyone who drafted the Dual-threat QB ended up getting burned, Newton had a down-season due to injury and he finished 2016 with just 3,509 yards passing, 19 passing touchdowns, 359 yards rushing and 5 rushing touchdowns, which was well down on his 2015 totals.
The biggest hit to Newton’s fantasy value is the fact that he will be running less from now on, rightly so the Panthers want to protect their franchise QB, (they don’t care about your fantasy team). He’s never been the most accurate passer with a career 58.4 completion percentage. The panthers drafted Christian McCaffery and Curtis Samuel to help with the short passing game. Without Newton running the ball as much his floor week to week will be a lot lower, he’s only thrown over 4000 yards once and that was his rookie year, he’s only had over 24 touchdowns once and only had over 250+ average yards a game once back in his rookie season.
With so many quarterbacks available the numbers just don’t add up, he’s currently the 7th QB of the board with Russell Wilson, Jameis Winston, Kirk Cousins and Marcus Mariota all being drafted after him. These guys are a lot more appealing so let some other joker take Newton. After the season starts they will kicking themselves they didn’t take Tyrod Taylor instead.
Ben Roethlisberger – ADP 8.03
Big Ben in my eyes has the best tandem of Wide Receivers with no.1 Martavis Bryant and Antonio Brown. He also has the most talented running back in the league in Le’Veon Bell but even with all these options Big Ben just can’t get it together when he’s on the road. His home/road splits are crazy, in the last 3 seasons Big Ben win record is 17-5 at home and 15-10 on the road. His touchdown and interception split is 62/20 ratio at home and 24/23 ratio on the road. At Heinz field, Big Ben is an elite option and you can start him against most teams with confidence but when he’s on the road you may as well play Alex Smith instead.
If you make a mistake and draft Big Ben you are going to need a 2nd QB on your roster to put in when he’s on the road and that’s without taking injuries in, which he seems to be suffering more frequently having missed 6 games over the last two seasons. At his price it doesn’t make sense to take him in the 7th/8th round when there are plenty of great options being drafted later.
The best time to own him is week 11 onwards where he has five out of seven games at home, that’s if he’s still healthy by then. Personally, I’d just let him be someone else’s headache.
Tom Brady - ADP 3.03
I have moral standards. *
I usually wait on tight ends unless someone falls in the draft, I can’t resist a bargain, but you can pick up serviceable ones late or even off waivers if your league is shallow enough.
O.J. Howard - ADP 10.10
Let me put it out there, O.J. Howard will be an elite player in the NFL, he has the build, skill and temperament to make it in this league but I’m not on board with him this year. The Buccaneers already have a top tight end option in Cameron Brate, (who is being drafted after Howard), at their disposal, Brate is expected to see more snaps than Howard this year. Jameis Winston’s receiving core is packed this year with the likes of Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson and forgotten man Adam Humphries. With so many options it will be hard for Howard to live up to his current ADP, there are plenty of tight ends who have defined roles for their teams going later in the draft. Howard is an easy fade for me.
Rookie tight ends very rarely live up to their draft ADPs, only one rookie tight end has finished in the top 12 and that was Hunter Henry last year. If I was banking on any rookie tight end being top 12 this year I’d be putting my money on David Njoku. The Browns aren’t blessed with great receivers and they released their no.1 TE Gary Barnidge so they must like the kid. In dynasty leagues Howard is my top rookie tight end but I’m not expecting big things quite yet.
Howard is being drafted before the likes of Zach Ertz, Jack Doyle and Eric Ebron. There is a severe case of rookie fever surrounding Howard so to prevent this let someone else take him. Go get the Buccaneers no.1 tight end 3 rounds later.
* I just don’t like Tom Brady and with his third-round value I’d only consider taking Aaron Rodgers that high in the draft and even then I’d need my arm severely twisted to do it.
ADPs and Rankings from FantasyFootballCalculator.com
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